Monday, August 21, 2006

Academic Year Resolutions

I think a lot of us did this last year as well. I'm planning a Teaching Carnival post. I actually have lots to think about as I get involved in teaching as a broader issue across campus. But you'll have to wait for that. For now, I have just the resolutions for the coming academic year (which I know has started for some; I have two glorious weeks).

1. Finish the dissertation. That's a must. I may have to put off official finishing until May, but a complete draft should be done by the end of September.

2. Yoga every morning. I'm feeling the need to decompress and start the day feeling relaxed rather than anxious. It's going to be a hectic semester and I really feel like I need to take time to focus on something besides work and dissertating.

3. Take a few hikes. The Geeky family is planning to do some hikes at nearby places. We're going to shoot for every weekend. We'll see how that goes, but this relates to #2, only with the opportunity to connect with the family as well. A side note: I'm generally planning to take small steps toward doing my part in protecting the environment. When I was at the beach, I really realized how fragile that ecosystem is. There are fewer birds now than there were 30 years ago and certain sea creatures that used to proliferate also seem depleted. So the hiking is part of that, too.

4. Put in my best effort at work without worrying about being rewarded for that effort. I really do enjoy doing a good job just for its own sake. But sometimes when doing that job doesn't result in a "thank you" or "job well done" from somebody, anybody, I start to wear down. I'm going to try not to expect anything from my work except the satisfaction of doing it well. The reward may come much later.

5. Go to every kid event I can--PTA meetings, soccer games, plays, etc. I want to be as involved as I can be and get to know some other parents along the way.

6. Quit the inadequacy schtick. I know this is Phantom's schtick (and I think she should quit too). Too often, I feel like I'm not good enough. Not smart enough. Not thin enough. Not a hard enough worker, a good enough mother or wife. I'm quitting now. No one is perfect. I'm doing my best. I'm happy with where I am and I am no longer going to worry about how I compare to others. I am not going to let others' comments demean me. Do I sound like Stuart Smalley yet?

I think that's it. There are other mini goals I have related to specific projects. I'm really focused on the dissertation, though, so everything else (besides family) is taking a back seat. Does anyone else do academic year resolutions?